Two British soldiers wounded in al-Basra, 25 killed in a suicide bombing in the green area
Iraq-USA, Military, 1/19/2004
The American administrator of Iraq, Paul Bremer, condemned the suicide explosion which targeted the headquarters of the occupation forces in the downtown of Baghdad and resulted in killing 15 persons, including two Americans, and wounding 131 persons.
In a statement quoted by the coalition internet site in Iraq, Bremer vowed to proceed forward, despite what is taking place, in the plan to hand over the authority to the Iraqis in its due time set the end of June 2004. He said that the terrorist explosion today is a "clear evidence, once again on the bloody intentions of the terrorists who seek to undermine freedom, democracy and progress in Iraq."
The American forces said that the final result of the explosion will be announced as soon as investigations are completed, while news reports that so far 25 persons were killed. The explosion took place in the first work hours when scores of Iraqis and cars are entering the Republican palace, which is taken by the occupation forces as a headquarters, in what become to be known as the green area, which is under tough security guarding.
Witnesses said that the booby trapped car which was used in the explosion was a Toyota Pick up truck. An American military spokesman said that the car was carrying 500 Kg of explosives, while another military spokesman explained that the car penetrated all security barriers, and was about the enter the last inspection point.
The witnesses indicated that the car came in at high speed and stopped suddenly in the back of all cars waiting to enter the green area, and that the car went off seconds after that, to convert the place to a pond of blood.
The witnesses added that the American soldiers after that started to open fire, and a state of horror and disorder took place, and fire flared up from several sedan cars that were running or stationed.
The occupation forces announced through loudspeakers a financial reward of 2500 dollars to anyone who provides information leading to the arrest of the persons responsible for the recent attack.
Commenting on the explosion, the analysis in the military affairs, Hafez al-Fahd, told the Qatari al-Jazeera TV from Baghdad that operations having started to take place in sensitive position means that the operations started to be more organized and of more self confident by the attackers.
Just one hour after Baghdad's explosion, two British soldiers were injured, one is in a critical condition in a bomb explosion yesterday morning in al-Basra to the south of Iraq, as one British vehicle was running in one of the city's crossroads. This however, resulted in destroying one of the cars. Immediately the British forces cordoned the site of the incident.
In Tikrit to the north of Baghdad, two Iraqis were killed and a third was wounded on late Saturday evening in a bomb explosion inside a car. One American military spokesman said that it is believed that the three Iraqis were intending to implant the explosive on the roadside in the city.
In a later development, the Iraqi police defused two explosives one of them was placed near a school children in al-Kirrada area, to the downtown of Baghdad, while the second was implanted near a house. The explosives experts who defused the two bombs said they were locally made.
These recent successive developments came after less than 24 hours from the killing of 4 American soldiers, three of them were killed in a bomb explosion near al-Taji town to the north of Baghdad.
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